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Hasbro Brings out New Construct-Bots Building Sets

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Re: Hasbro Brings out New Construct-Bots Building Sets

Postby JOP » Wed Jan 23, 2013 7:41 pm

That Bot wrote:I'll grant that the name "Generations" is rather strange. However, since Air Raid and the Wreckers all seem to be non-game characters...


These characters might not feature in Fall of Cybertron, but they use molds that were derived from that very game. Their aesthetics and alternate modes are very clearly derived from that particular incarnation of the franchise, and not from the G1 / G2 / Beast Era that Classics / Henkei / Universe / Generations normally draw upon.

That Bot wrote:While it's true that Beast Hunters has not introduced much in the way of new characters yet, this is generally consistent with past lines such as Cybertron and Beast Wars upgrading certain characters into new bodies (toys).


The difference however is that both Beast Wars and Cybertron created entirely new, radically different designs for each upgrade. At present, starting with the various movie-related lines and moving on to Transformers: Prime, it appears that Hasbro are happy to essentially keep reinventing the same wheel. There's First Edition Bumblebee, Robots in Disguise Bumblebee, Weaponizer Bumblebee, and now Beast Hunters Bumblebee; not to mention the half dozen straight repaints of these figures - and they are all fundamentally represent the same design, give or take some spiky bits!

That Bot wrote:Wave 2 gives us 4 ENTIRELY new molds (even for our returning characters)...


Yes; but entirely new molds representing the way that Cybertron Hot Shot, Scattorshot and Red Alert were re-envisioned as the Cybertron Vanguard Team, or new molds that look exactly the same as the old molds, plus or minus some transformation elements?

That Bot wrote:Also, Thundertron and Predaking do NOT follow the generic quad-to-biped pattern, as Thundertron's forearms are in fact only half of his beast's forelegs, his upper arms filling in the chest cavity left by the lion head. Predaking's robot legs form his beast body and his rear beast legs fold up inside of them in robot mode.


Thundertron and Predaking are very guilty of the quad-to-biped pattern; we are merely being more forgiving because their larger size allows for the transformation to be marginally more sophisticated. The simple fact of the matter is that Thundertron's forelegs form part of his robot arms, and Predaking's hindlegs form part of his robot legs.

If you really wanted to argue the issue, I guess you could make the point that Predaking transforms in a very similar way to the original four land-dwelling Dinobots, or to the three upper-torso members of the original Predacons. To which I would respond: is that really how far we've come?

That Bot wrote:Vehicle transformers are guilty of the exact same trappings as everybody criticizes beast bots for. How many transformations boil down to "stand car on end, unfold legs from back of car, pull out arms from side of car, fold car hood down to form robot chest"?


This isn't an argument about the transformation complexity of beast 'bots, though; it's an argument about the transformation complexity of Beast Hunters toys (or lack thereof). The simple fact of the matter is that the Beast Era contains numerous examples of creative beast-based transformations, and that so far, the Beast Hunters line does not.

That Bot wrote:...Even though Lazerback and Ripclaw have very basic transformations, they still manage to have cool tidbits in them, like how Lazerback's body splits open to store the beast head, and how Ripclaw's beast neck forms shoulder armor. I find that much more desirable than having beast legs just hanging off the back or sides of the robot (unless it's Big Convoy where you can pretend the mammoth rear legs are giant laser cannons in bot mode).


That's another false equivalency though - no-one is arguing in favor of robot modes that feature dangling extraneous beast mode limbs. That the Beast Hunters figures seen so far have found ways in which to avoid this particular problem is to be applauded; this does not change the fact that of the four figures mentioned, all use roughly the same tired transformation scheme.

That Bot wrote:I agree with you here. I'd be willing to pay more money for a better quality toy. I've got a preorder in for a third party Predacon right that's roughly voyager size right now for $75 and I'm okay with that because it looks cool as hell. I think the problem stems from non-fan parents who just see the pricetag and the size of the toy and compare it to the price of similarly-sized action figures.


I wholeheartedly agree. The problem seems to stem from the same confluence of factors: one, that Habro insists on conducting the majority of their sales through high street retailers; two, either Hasbro and / or said retailers are determined to maintain a consistent set of price points for what are, as you point out, wildly disparate products.

That Bot wrote:Indeed, while I think these are a cool idea that I have no interest in, and think they'll do fine, I could be totally off the mark. Who knows.


I imagine that they will sell perfectly well for a couple of years, and then Hasbro will quietly cancel the line and move on to producing a Transformers-themed imitation of yet another competitor's product. Money will be made; longevity will not be achieved.
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Re: Hasbro Brings out New Construct-Bots Building Sets

Postby JOP » Wed Jan 23, 2013 8:08 pm

RAcast wrote:That statistic has got to be as bad as the "collectors account for only about 10% of the market," bit. ;) I'd guess it's probably somewhere in the middle though, maybe closer to 25-30%?


The problem is quite simply this:

The majority of Transformers products in the United States are purchased for children by parents, guardians and similar acquaintances. Ergo, such products are designed, manufactured, distributed and sold with children in mind.

A small proportion of Transformers products in the United States are purchased by adult collectors. It is frequently noted that such collectors represent a very small portion of the overall purchasing population. However, it should be noted that they generally purchase more products per person, and are willing to spend far more per product.

Conventional wisdom suggests that given the relative sizes of the child consumer and collector segments, that the former take complete and utter priority over the latter. However, the rapid growth of the third party market strongly suggests that collectors may in fact represent a far more lucrative segment than currently recognized; in particular, the wide acceptance of the six hundred dollar price tag attached to TFC's Project Hercules could be regarded as quite the eyeopener.

The entire situation gains an additional degree of absurdity when one considers that Hasbro is perfectly comfortable with assigning the GI Joe license to Sideshow Collectables, and allowing them to produce collector-grade figures with one hundred and thirty dollar price tags; and similarly, assigning the otherwise defunct Jem license to Integrity Toys, and allowing them to produce collector-grade fashion dollars with one hundred and thirty dollar price tags. When it comes to what is arguably Hasbro's biggest brand however, the idea of selling anything more than an occasional, fifty dollar Masterpiece figure appears positively antithetical.
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Re: Hasbro Brings out New Construct-Bots Building Sets

Postby RAcast » Wed Jan 23, 2013 9:11 pm

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JOP wrote:
RAcast wrote:That statistic has got to be as bad as the "collectors account for only about 10% of the market," bit. ;) I'd guess it's probably somewhere in the middle though, maybe closer to 25-30%?


The problem is quite simply this:

The majority of Transformers products in the United States are purchased for children by parents, guardians and similar acquaintances. Ergo, such products are designed, manufactured, distributed and sold with children in mind.

A small proportion of Transformers products in the United States are purchased by adult collectors. It is frequently noted that such collectors represent a very small portion of the overall purchasing population. However, it should be noted that they generally purchase more products per person, and are willing to spend far more per product.

Conventional wisdom suggests that given the relative sizes of the child consumer and collector segments, that the former take complete and utter priority over the latter. However, the rapid growth of the third party market strongly suggests that collectors may in fact represent a far more lucrative segment than currently recognized; in particular, the wide acceptance of the six hundred dollar price tag attached to TFC's Project Hercules could be regarded as quite the eyeopener.

The entire situation gains an additional degree of absurdity when one considers that Hasbro is perfectly comfortable with assigning the GI Joe license to Sideshow Collectables, and allowing them to produce collector-grade figures with one hundred and thirty dollar price tags; and similarly, assigning the otherwise defunct Jem license to Integrity Toys, and allowing them to produce collector-grade fashion dollars with one hundred and thirty dollar price tags. When it comes to what is arguably Hasbro's biggest brand however, the idea of selling anything more than an occasional, fifty dollar Masterpiece figure appears positively antithetical.

That's about the size of it, well said.

Of course, it's worth mentioning that MP10 Optimus sold like hotcakes, so much so that TRU bumped prices not once but twice.
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Re: Hasbro Brings out New Construct-Bots Building Sets

Postby JOP » Wed Jan 23, 2013 11:30 pm

RAcast wrote:Of course, it's worth mentioning that MP10 Optimus sold like hotcakes, so much so that TRU bumped prices not once but twice.


I wasn't aware that Toys'R'Us raised their prices on MP-10 Optimus Prime, although I can certainly believe such a thing. I don't suppose you happen to know when they raised said prices, and by how much?

I'll also take this opportunity to note, at least in my experience, that traditional distribution via brick and mortar stores results in a lower prices, but a poor or even non-existent selection of products. Adult collectors, by definition, tend to prioritize selection and ease of purchase over pricing, and are willing to pay a premium accordingly.

It is thus quite fascinating that Hasbro sought to distribute their version of MP-10 via Toys'R'Us at a basement bargain price, but with the distribution issues inherent in such a venture; and that Toys'R'Us in turn discerned that collectors were willing to shoulder not one, but two price hikes. It rather makes one wonder why Hasbro didn't simply seek to sell the figure exclusively via HasbroToyShop.com at an appropriately premium price point (e.g. one hundred dollars).
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Re: Hasbro Brings out New Construct-Bots Building Sets

Postby chuckdawg1999 » Thu Jan 24, 2013 12:43 am

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JOP wrote:
RAcast wrote:Of course, it's worth mentioning that MP10 Optimus sold like hotcakes, so much so that TRU bumped prices not once but twice.


I wasn't aware that Toys'R'Us raised their prices on MP-10 Optimus Prime, although I can certainly believe such a thing. I don't suppose you happen to know when they raised said prices, and by how much?

I'll also take this opportunity to note, at least in my experience, that traditional distribution via brick and mortar stores results in a lower prices, but a poor or even non-existent selection of products. Adult collectors, by definition, tend to prioritize selection and ease of purchase over pricing, and are willing to pay a premium accordingly.

It is thus quite fascinating that Hasbro sought to distribute their version of MP-10 via Toys'R'Us at a basement bargain price, but with the distribution issues inherent in such a venture; and that Toys'R'Us in turn discerned that collectors were willing to shoulder not one, but two price hikes. It rather makes one wonder why Hasbro didn't simply seek to sell the figure exclusively via HasbroToyShop.com at an appropriately premium price point (e.g. one hundred dollars).


Hasbro Toy Shop is a completely separate entity. Think of them as a Marshals that sells Hasbro items only.
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Re: Hasbro Brings out New Construct-Bots Building Sets

Postby RAcast » Thu Jan 24, 2013 1:13 am

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JOP wrote:
RAcast wrote:Of course, it's worth mentioning that MP10 Optimus sold like hotcakes, so much so that TRU bumped prices not once but twice.


I wasn't aware that Toys'R'Us raised their prices on MP-10 Optimus Prime, although I can certainly believe such a thing. I don't suppose you happen to know when they raised said prices, and by how much?

I'll also take this opportunity to note, at least in my experience, that traditional distribution via brick and mortar stores results in a lower prices, but a poor or even non-existent selection of products. Adult collectors, by definition, tend to prioritize selection and ease of purchase over pricing, and are willing to pay a premium accordingly.

It is thus quite fascinating that Hasbro sought to distribute their version of MP-10 via Toys'R'Us at a basement bargain price, but with the distribution issues inherent in such a venture; and that Toys'R'Us in turn discerned that collectors were willing to shoulder not one, but two price hikes. It rather makes one wonder why Hasbro didn't simply seek to sell the figure exclusively via HasbroToyShop.com at an appropriately premium price point (e.g. one hundred dollars).

I said TRU bumped prices, NOT Hasbro. TRU bumped prices because they were selling out of MP Primes faster than they were getting in, if I know anything about basic Supply and Demand. They were initially sold at MSRP ($100) but subsequently went up to $110-120 and as high as (I think) $130?

It's all too common a mistake to blame every price hike on Hasbro's end. Retailers are just as likely to up prices if they see fit, and they can do so on a whim. Of course, pushing the MSRP to $15 on MUCH smaller figures probably didn't do much for anybody. It's certainly kept me away from Shockwave and FRumble, despite the fact that I REALLY like both molds; I just can't justify the price.
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Re: Hasbro Brings out New Construct-Bots Building Sets

Postby VioMeTriX » Thu Jan 24, 2013 8:48 am

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when i got my 3 mp-10 hasbro primes, they were 130... but i brought in several print materials showing hasbros' MSRP, and they honored it. they can bump prices all they want... in the end if you bring enough supporting facts they are obligated... and my bud david that works for hasbro has said the exclusives may go to walmart from now on as they dont get greedy and raise prices. shame on you toys r us for being a **** retailer in this economy
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Re: Hasbro Brings out New Construct-Bots Building Sets

Postby JOP » Thu Jan 24, 2013 12:21 pm

RAcast wrote:I said TRU bumped prices, NOT Hasbro.


I didn't think I was suggesting anything different. :lol:

RAcast wrote:TRU bumped prices because they were selling out of MP Primes faster than they were getting in, if I know anything about basic Supply and Demand. They were initially sold at MSRP ($100) but subsequently went up to $110 - 120 and as high as (I think) $130?


That's precisely what I'm talking about - Hasbro and / or the retailers that serve as their distribution channels are absolutely wedded to a price point (e.g. one hundred dollars) that is significantly below the price at which collectors value the product. Now, I'm not suggesting that Hasbro et al. should be using this as an excuse to summarily increase prices without a corresponding increase in value; rather, that Hasbro seem to spend a lot of time cutting costs (e.g. material weight, paint applications) that collectors would be more than willing to pay for.

In essence, Hasbro et al. are attempting to position the price of MP-10 Optimus Prime somewhere in the hundred dollar region at a time when the only competing alternative, MP-10 Convoy, fetches a price almost one hundred and fifty dollars higher.

As a side note, I think I may have mentioned earlier that I was under the impression that the domestic release of the figure was priced at something like fifty dollars; I have no idea where that came from in retrospect, and should probably refrain from responding late at night. :lol:

RAcast wrote:It's all too common a mistake to blame every price hike on Hasbro's end. Retailers are just as likely to up prices if they see fit, and they can do so on a whim. Of course, pushing the MSRP to $15 on MUCH smaller figures probably didn't do much for anybody. It's certainly kept me away from Shockwave and FRumble, despite the fact that I REALLY like both molds; I just can't justify the price.


My complaint is actually the opposite; that Hasbro and their retail partners are so strongly attached to a traditional retail pricing model that they are essentially hobbling their own ability to court the collector market; and then, ironically, they point to their lack of success in this area as proof that the collector segment is not worth chasing in the first place.

Think of it like this: last year, god only knows how many fans put down between three hundred and fifty and six hundred dollars a piece to own a Masterpiece-scale Devastator analog. Toys'R'Us will never, ever consider carrying an 'action figure' of that value; ergo, and Hasbro will not consider selling such a figure via other means. Hence, as far as they are concerned, there is little to no point in pursuing production on such an item.

I bring HasbroToyShop.com up because, even if they are organizationally independent of Hasbro proper, they represent an online retail outlet that Hasbro effectively controls (as the site purveys only Hasbro-brand items). HasbroToyShop could be used as a logical next step in reaching out to the collector market independent of the stifling influence of the likes of Toys'R'Us; but this is a course of action that Hasbro currently chooses not to pursue.
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Re: Hasbro Brings out New Construct-Bots Building Sets

Postby Janus Prime » Sun Jan 27, 2013 2:44 pm

What was this topic about anyway? it´s not a retoric question, I don´t want to look at the tittle because I think it´s hilarious how reading the last two pages made me forget all about it.
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Re: Hasbro Brings out New Construct-Bots Building Sets

Postby RAcast » Sun Jan 27, 2013 2:56 pm

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I don't know why it's just NOW hitting me, but the Optimus's altmode looks EXACTLY like the original BTR set's altmode. :lol: That's fine though, it was a good altmode, though I could say the bumper on this one could use to stick out a little less.
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Re: Hasbro Brings out New Construct-Bots Building Sets

Postby That Bot » Sun Jan 27, 2013 3:10 pm

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Janus Prime wrote:What was this topic about anyway? it´s not a retoric question, I don´t want to look at the tittle because I think it´s hilarious how reading the last two pages made me forget all about it.

It's about Hasbro's new line of constructible action figures, which are pretty obviously a "me too" on Bionicle and Hero Factory and whatnot.
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Re: Hasbro Brings out New Construct-Bots Building Sets

Postby Janus Prime » Sun Jan 27, 2013 3:14 pm

That Bot wrote:
Janus Prime wrote:What was this topic about anyway? it´s not a retoric question, I don´t want to look at the tittle because I think it´s hilarious how reading the last two pages made me forget all about it.

It's about Hasbro's new line of constructible action figures, which are pretty obviously a "me too" on Bionicle and Hero Factory and whatnot.


Oh dude, the email totally ruined it!
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